“Fairy tales are more than true; not because they tell us that dragons exist, but because they tell us that dragons can be beaten.” ― G.K. Chesterton

Thursday, November 8, 2018

A Contemporary Romance with Depth--"Blue Ridge Sunrise" by Denise Hunter--Review

 
My Review:
 
From the cover I was expecting a fun, cute romance.  Instead, "Blue Ridge Sunrise" by Denise Hunter is a romance with a lot of deeper issues being explored; such as family drama and dealing with past mistakes.  The first half of the book is dealing more with Zoe, our main female protagonist, returning home and facing her past.  Because of this there are flashbacks to Zoe’s past; a lot of which were bad decisions she had made.  I didn’t enjoy the first half as much because there is more mature content and I was really frustrated with Zoe.  The second half is where I started to like the book a lot more and I give Ms. Hunter kudos for the transformation Zoe goes through and her character arc. 

In the end, Zoe and Cruz (the hero of the book), learn a lot of lessons.  Zoe’s friend reminds her to find her identity in God and not any man.  Zoe realizes she has been trying to control things when God should be in control and she should pass things by God before acting.  Cruz’s faith also grows throughout the novel.  The only thing that is a little troublesome is that Zoe and Cruz made mistakes in the past, but I don’t really see them acknowledging specifically that what they did is wrong.

Of course, I love the romance!  Cruz is a great guy and it’s so sweet how he is so protective of Zoe and never stops loving her.  Ms. Hunter is an amazing writer and her style is easy to read.    Overall, I liked the book.  I think fans of contemporary novels and romance with some depth will really enjoy this book!

Content: This book definitely falls in the category of edgy Christian fiction with a PG-13 rating.  Some examples of the content are: the word hell is used; a couple shares a hotel room and sleep together when they aren’t married; people are at a bar and drink alcohol; a man is physically and emotionally abusive towards his girlfriend; a man calls a woman a derogatory name, but the word isn’t written; reference to someone being a drug addict.              
      
Rating: I give this book 3 stars.

Genre: Contemporary; Christian fiction; Romance.

I want to thank Denise Hunter, The Fiction Guild and Thomas Nelson for the complimentary copy of this book for review. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I express in this review are my own. This is in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s CFR 16, Part 255.                                                                            
 
 
 
 
 
Author Bio:
Denise Hunter is the internationally published bestselling author of more than 30 books, including "The Convenient Groom" and "A December Bride" which have been made into Hallmark movies. She has appeared on the The 700 club and won awards such as The Holt Medallion Award, The Carol Award, The Reader's Choice Award, The Foreword Book of the Year Award, and is a RITA finalist.

Denise writes heartwarming, small-town love stories. Her readers enjoy the experience of falling in love vicariously through her characters and can expect a happily-ever-after sigh as they close the pages of her books.

In 1996, inspired by the death of her grandfather, Denise began her first book, writing while her children napped. Two years later it was published, and she's been writing ever since. Her husband says he inspires all her romantic stories, but Denise insists a good imagination helps too!

When Denise isn't orchestrating love lives on the written page, she enjoys traveling with her family, drinking coffee, and playing drums. Denise makes her home in Indiana where she and her husband are currently enjoying an empty nest.

You can learn more about Denise by visiting her FaceBook page.

To visit the author's website click here
To purchase the book click here

Tuesday, November 6, 2018

"An Hour Unspent" by Roseanna White Blog Tour (Review) & GIVEAWAY!

an hour unspent FB banner copy

An Hour UnspentAbout the Book

 

Once London’s top thief, Barclay Pearce has turned his back on his life of crime and now uses his skills for a nation at war. But not until he rescues a clockmaker’s daughter from a mugging does he begin to wonder what his future might hold.

Evelina Manning has constantly fought for independence but she certainly never meant for it to inspire her fiancĂ© to end the engagement and enlist in the army. When the intriguing man who saved her returns to the Manning residence to study clockwork repair with her father, she can’t help being interested. But she soon learns that nothing with Barclay Pearce is as simple as it seems.
 
As 1915 England plunges ever deeper into war, the work of an ingenious clockmaker may give England an unbeatable military edge—and Germany realizes it as well. Evelina’s father soon finds his whole family in danger—and it may just take a reformed thief to steal the time they need to escape it.

Click here to purchase your copy!


My Review

You’ll want to steal some hours for yourself to read this wonderful conclusion to the “Shadows Over England” series!  “An Hour Unspent” by Roseanna White is the third and final book in the series.  I have read the first two books in the series and would recommend reading all three in order, as many similar characters appear in more than one book.  But it could be enjoyed as a standalone as well.
 
Since reading the first two books, I have been eager for the remainder of Barclay’s story.  Ms. White does a wonderful job fleshing out Barclay’s character and writing a heroine for him (Evelina).  I love the relationship between Barclay and Evelina.  Both characters go through journeys of faith throughout the story.  Barclay is a fairly new Christian at the beginning of the book.  It’s great to see how honest Barclay tries to be; he is struggling with trying to do the right things.  It’s inspiring to see the way this thief grows in faith.  Barclay realizes God doesn’t always take away the bad, but if we ask, God gives us the strength to deal with it.  Evelina sees God as a Great Clockmaker, who sets things in motion but then leaves His creation alone.  She learns that like a great clockmaker who is fine tuning his clock and continually working on it, God is doing the same with our lives.  He really is involved with and cares about each of His children. 

“An Hour Unspent” is all about family and relationships.  Many of the characters in the story learn that people, not things, are what really matter.  Family is what really makes you rich.  One shouldn’t spend all their time regretting what they haven’t done, but instead, spend the time they do have with the people who count, especially family.  I love the many ways family is portrayed in this story; with biological, broken families and a family of thieves who always looks out for one another.  I don’t particularly like reading about war or this time period and I found the story a little slow at times.  This is why I didn’t give it five stars, but it is worth the read for me!

Ms. White has employed well-written characters and universal themes in “An Hour Unspent!”  This is one I would recommend, especially if you love historical fiction and this time period. 

Content:  This is a clean read with a PG rating.  Some examples of the content are: a man notices a woman’s curves; talk of a man possibly having a mistress; mention of drunkards; people curse, but the word isn’t actually written; characters mention wanting to drink champagne.

Rating:  I give this book 4 stars!

Genre: Christian fiction; Historical; Romance; Mystery

I want to thank Celebrate Lit, Roseanna White and Bethany House Publishers for the complimentary copy of this book for review. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I express in this review are my own. This is in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s CFR 16, Part 255.


Roseanna 2018About the Author

 
Roseanna M. White is a bestselling, Christy Award nominated author who has long claimed that words are the air she breathes. When not writing fiction, she’s homeschooling her two kids, editing, designing book covers, and pretending her house will clean itself. Roseanna is the author of a slew of historical novels that span several continents and thousands of years. Spies and war and mayhem always seem to find their way into her books…to offset her real life, which is blessedly ordinary. You can learn more about her and her stories at www.RoseannaMWhite.com.

 
 

Guest Post from Roseanna


Last year, as I finished up the writing of An Hour Unspent, my great-grandmother passed away at the age of 103. As I sat at her funeral service and listened to the heartfelt memorial raised up to her by her kids and grandkids, I realized anew that this woman had been a matriarch in the truest sense of the word. She’d taught my family for generations how to love the Lord and each other, how to serve the Lord and each other, and how to trust the Lord and each other. Grandma Seward was, in so many ways, the one who instilled in me my idea of what family really is.

That idea—that it’s those knit together by love more than blood, and that faith is the strongest foundation—is what I built my unusual family of thieves upon in the Shadows Over England series. And strange as it is to liken my twenty-something reformed-thief hero to my 103-year-old-grandmother, Barclay Pearce is very much to his family what Maxine Seward was to mine.

The founder. The caregiver. The leader.

I knew as I began the series that I would write about Barclay in book three, and as I got to know him better throughout the series, I grew so excited to share his story! This is a man who led his family first into and then out of a life a crime, always for the right reasons—so he could provide for the children under his care. All he ever wanted to do was give them what he himself had lost. To show them love. To prove to them that they were worth any sacrifice.

It was truly a blessing for me to get to write the story in which Barclay found someone to come alongside him, to appreciate and learn to understand him. To finally share what started him down this path. I loved the idea that only a reformed thief could steal the time another family needed to overcome their own trials.

There are many historical items in the book that were such fun to explore—watchmaking of the era, the suffrage movement in England, technological advancements of the war—but at the heart, this isn’t a story about any of those.

It’s a story about how far people should go for love. I hope you enjoy Barclay’s story as much as I did!

Blog Stops

 
The Avid Reader, October 30
The Power of Words, October 30
Back Porch Reads, October 30
Faithfully Bookish, October 31
Genesis 5020, October 31
Fiction Aficionado, November 1
Among the Reads, November 1
The Lit Addict, November 1
Multifarious, November 2
Godly Book Reviews, November 2
Madeline Clark, November 2
Bookworm Mama, November 3
Bigreadersite, November 3
Blogging With Carol , November 4
Life with the Tribe, November 4
The Becca Files, November 4
Kathleen Denly, November 5
Cordially Barbara, November 5
Simple Harvest Reads, November 5 (Guest Post from Mindy Houng)
All-of-a-kind Mom, November 6
Carpe Diem, November 6
Maureen’s Musings , November 8
Book by Book, November 8
Just Commonly, November 8
cherylbbookblog, November 9
Have A Wonderful Day , November 9
With a Joyful Noise, November 9
KarenSueHadley , November 10
Baker kella, November 10
Bibliophile Reviews, November 10
Inklings and Notions , November 11
Henry Happens, November 12
Texas Book-aholic, November 12
 

Giveaway

 
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To celebrate her tour, Roseanna is giving away a grand prize of a signed book, a London mug, and a 48-pack Twinings tea sampler!!
 
 
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter. https://promosimple.com/ps/d570/an-hour-unspent-celebration-tour-giveaway